How do you prepare for your first day on the set? Why might a bad audition lead to a good job offer? How should you research a new part? What's the effect of touring on your private life? How do you survive a long run? What about explicit love scenes? Can you have a glass of wine before a matinee? What's the difference between transitive and intransitive corpsing? What is stage fright? In Michael Pennington's highly personal guide and memoir there are sections on rehearsals, on television then and now, on who does what on a film set, on the disciplines and rewards of musical theatre, and five directors discuss why the scenery is better on radio. Disability and racial bias in the theatre are discussed and we sometimes hear from other, younger voices who are following parallel paths. There's a meeting with Robert de Niro, and anidiosyncratic A-Z covers everything from Availability to Max Factor, from Professional Jealousy to Understudying, from Voice Overs to Zhoozh. Infectiously enthusiastic, both conversational and profound,Let Me Play the Lion Toodraws on the author's fifty years of experience to celebrate the deadly serious, sometimes hilarious, often misunderstood but infinitely enriching life of a professional actor.